Skip to content
    Back To Blog

    The Oprah Winfrey South Africa Leadership Program  visits Johannesburg, Pretoria, Pilanesburg, and Cape Town, South Africa

    June 20, 2024

    On May 19, 2024, nine Oprah Winfrey scholars embarked on the 12-day South Africa Leadership Program! This transformative study abroad experience included visits to Johannesburg, Pretoria, Pilanesburg, and Cape Town, South Africa. The experience was highlighted by the opportunity to serve as official observers of South Africa's presidential election, held 30 years after the election of Nelson Mandela. Scholars observed election processes at multiple sites and shared feedback with election officials. Observation of South Africa's democratic elections became an opportunity to juxtapose this process in South Africa and the United States and generated fruitful discussions about the importance of and threats to democracy worldwide.

    Program activities included meetings with community leaders and university and other academic officials, faculty, and students. University visits included the University of Pretoria, the University of the Western Cape, and the University of South Africa. Engaging and informative visits to the Mandela Foundation, the Desmond and Leah Tutu Foundation, and the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation allowed scholars to explore these great leaders' lives, accomplishments, challenges, and leadership philosophies.

    Visits to historic sites and organizations documenting the history of Apartheid and preserving the legacy of the fight for freedom and justice in South Africa included the Apartheid Museum, the Hector Pieterson Museum, Mandela House, and Robben Island Prison. Scholars experienced Cape Town's Iziko Slave Lodge to learn about the roles of enslaved peoples in building South Africa that set the stage for Apartheid.
    A day of service at the Kliptown Youth Program (KYP) was a highlight of the program, allowing scholars to make a tangible difference in the community. They tutored, painted community members' homes, served food, and played soccer with the children. This powerful experience has sparked ongoing discussions among the scholars about how Morehouse can continue to support and engage with the KYP, demonstrating their commitment to service and community engagement.

    Scholars appreciated the opportunity to enjoy South Africa's natural beauty through excursions to Pilanesberg National Park, Table Mountain, and the Cape of Good Hope.

    Throughout the experience, scholars responded to prompts, providing written reflections on their experiences and knowledge gained. Evening meetings allowed scholars to discuss the history, politics, and culture of South Africa and explore and compare social justice issues and democracy in the United States and South Africa.

    Other posts you might be interested in

    View All Posts
    June 28, 2023 | morehouse college

    Andrew Young Center for Global Leadership: Scholars Study Abroad in South Africa

    On May 15, 2023, faculty from the Andrew Young Center for Global Leadership led 16 scholars on a transformative study abroad experience in South Africa. Nine Oprah Winfrey... Read More
    October 16, 2023 | Faculty Blog

    Ambassador Dr. Rueben Brigety II, the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of South Africa Visits Morehouse

    Ambassador Dr. Rueben Brigety II, the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of South Africa, was invited by political science professor Dr. Levar Smith and Dr. Hye Ryeon Jang, in... Read More
    May 23, 2024 | Humanities, Social Sciences, Media, and The Arts

    Dr. Samuel Livingston Discuss AP African American Bans Live on Scripps NEws

    In a news clip captured from Scripps News, Dr. Samuel Livingston, associate professor of Africana Studies, delves into the contentious issue of banning Advanced Placement... Read More